I’ve been doing a little research in preparation for planting out our front garden (part 1 of the year long saga here) and we’re hoping to at least get some fresh soil to fill it up tomorrow (as opposed to the gritty, weedy variety we’ve started with from here), if not a few plants to get us started!
Because we have an existing bay tree, which is the only thing we’ve kept growing in that garden, it got me thinking about adding more “topiaried” trees to balance it out, and to create a semi-structured look for the all important first impression of our home.
Then, because we like to be a bit sustainable, and having a small garden makes you a bit creative in combining form and function, I am smitten with the idea of citrus trees! We’re lucky to have a prolific lemon tree hanging over our neighbours fence (I repaid them with some lemon honey once…) but with so many recipes wanting lime juice, zest or leaves I’ve added a Kaffir Lime and a Tahitian Lime to my tree shopping list. For colour, and the fun of eating them right off the tree, we plan to alternate mandarins with the limes too.
Here’s a little rendering I’ve come up with – I find it helps a lot to visualise things this way. Just putting this together has me wondering if what I have in mind is right for this house, but it’s a good place to start anyway and hopefully we’ll find someone helpful at the nursery who can advise us on all that we don’t know about!
We plan to replace the greened out part of the drive with grass one day… the garden to the left of the front door is no-mans land right now but may be a flower garden? Beyond the mandarin trees, to the right, we are going to start with a vege/herb garden and see what evolves from there (I’m not a big fan of vege gardens viewed from the front entrance… but it’s our best spot for one) . Note the house is not yet painted (no word on a date yet), I’ve just used a previous photoshopped photo!
You might have also noticed the wee box hedge? Right now I’m thinking of a chilean guava – are you detecting an edible theme here?! Some questions I have for a nursery-man or woman are which varieties of mandarin are recommended, whether we can underplant citrus trees with a ground cover or do we have to use mulch? If anyone has any advice I’d sure appreciate it!
On a happy Friday note, I thought I’d share some citrus scented memories from my past life (I was just thinking this morning that these memories are the likely reason for my hankering for some mandarin trees in my garden!)…
On a long weekend in Mallorca we caught a vintage steam train from Port de Soller over the mountains to Palma:
In Italy we took our scooter on a day trip along Lago di Garda and stopped for a drink under the orange trees:
Then in Sevilla, Spain, we dined alfresco under orange trees and enjoyed some delicious Sangria:
Good times, and maybe some citrus trees by my front door will remind me of those times every day!